Glacier National Park
From bucket list worthy hiking trails, to epic scenic drives, once in a lifetime wildlife viewing opportunities, unbelievable turquoise-colored lakes, wildflower-filled alpine meadows, and glistening glaciers galore, Glacier National Park is guaranteed to sweep you off your feet!
Glacier National Park is situated in northwest Montana and shares a border with Waterton Lakes National Park in Canada. It officially became a national park in 1910, and has become so popular that the park is now listed as one of the most visited national parks in the United States. In 2021, the park received just over three million visitors!
The closest city that you can fly into to visit Glacier National Park is in Kalispell which is a forty-five minute drive from the park’s West Glacier entrance. This park can be broken up into six sections; Lake McDonald, Logan Pass, St. Mary, Many Glacier, Two Medicine, and Polebridge. Most popular with visitors though is the Lake McDonald and Logan Pass areas.
Glacier National Park remains open year-round, however winter conditions do bring road closures to several locations such as the park’s biggest attraction, the Going-To-The-Sun Road. Snow comes early to Glacier National Park usually sometime in mid-October and remains on the ground late into June. For this reason, Glacier is a national park that is best visited in summer.
Many Glacier is located on the northeast side of Glacier National Park. It is arguably one of the most beautiful sections in the park and visitors often state that this area is their favorite. If possible, try to plan at least one full day in Many Glacier for sightseeing, or two to three days if you would like to hike some of the longer popular trails like the hike to Iceberg Lake or Grinnell Glacier.
Because Many Glacier is more remote than West Glacier, it doesn’t see as many visitors, however due to limited lodging and campgrounds, accommodations here can book out months in advance during the park’s peak season. Here are some guides to help you plan your trip to Many Glacier.
If you’re planning on flying into Montana or a nearby state to visit Glacier National Park, the best and closest airports to choose are Missoula and Spokane. Both of these airports are under a five hour drive from the West Glacier entrance and are much cheaper to fly into than Kalispell.
Turn your trip to Glacier National Park into a road trip! From Missoula, pick up a rental car and be sure to detour to the Bison Range and stop to see Flathead Lake on your way to Glacier.
Coming from Spokane, you can take Interstate 90 and visit a number of awesome places like Coeur D’Alene and Wallace. There is an alternative route from Spokane which will take you up to Sandpoint and then across U.S. Highway 2 where you can stop and see beautiful Kootenai Falls and the Kootenai Suspension Bridge.
Where To Stay In Glacier National Park
If you wish to stay inside Glacier National Park, you will need to book your accommodation months in advance, especially if you plan to visit between June and October. There are several lodging options in the Lake McDonald area which include Lake McDonald Lodge, the Village Inn, and Apgar Village Lodge & Cabins.
As for campgrounds, there are a few campgrounds located around the shores of Lake McDonald but the largest and most popular is the Apgar Campground.
If you can’t manage to secure a hotel room or a campsite inside the park in the Lake McDonald area, you will need to search for hotels room in West Glacier, Hungry Horse, Columbia Falls, or Whitefish. If hotel rooms are booked out, you may need to search for vacation homes near West Glacier.
Here are a few recommended hotels near the West Glacier entrance of Glacier National Park:
Use the interactive map above to search for hotels and vacation homes near Glacier National Park. Recommended hotels, campgrounds, and other points of interest have also been marked on the map.